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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​FY 2022 Distinguished Early Career Awards

DOE is awarding more than $3.1 million through its newly established Distinguished Early Career Program to support five early career faculty in five states.  

A complete list of the projects with their associated abstracts is available below.      
 

DECP 2022 Award Abstracts

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
Description
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY22%20Abstracts/DECP-28405_TechnicalAbstract_2022TechnicalAbstractDECP-28405.pdf
22
Georgia Institute of TechnologyDistinguished Early Career ProgramDistinguished Early Career Program Awards$625,000
A robot-assisted online monitoring, online maintenance, and dynamic risk assessment platform for LWRs and advanced reactors will be developed. This project will integrate a 3D nuclear power plant (NPP) digital twin with data from a pressurized water reactor (PWR) simulator to enable robotic navigation and manipulation research, and will be used to develop algorithms for autonomous fault detection, diagnosis, and risk assessment integrating robot assistance. Research will be demonstrated both virtually and in a real laboratory environment.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY22%20Abstracts/DECP-28356_TechnicalAbstract_2022TechnicalAbstract28356.pdf
22
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyDistinguished Early Career ProgramDistinguished Early Career Program Awards$625,000
This project will study boiling heat transfer and the boiling crisis in prototypical light water reactor (LWR) conditions. High-resolution optical diagnostics will be utilized to measure the time-dependent temperature, heat flux, and vapor phase distribution on the boiling surface, the vapor distribution and velocity in the flow. These measurements will allow finding an answer to long-standing dilemma related to the boiling of water and the boiling crisis in nuclear reactor conditions.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY22%20Abstracts/DECP-28434_TechnicalAbstract_2022TechnicalAbstractDECP-28434_edited.pdf
22
Pennsylvania State UniversityDistinguished Early Career ProgramDistinguished Early Career Program Awards$625,000
The goal of this research is directed toward developing scientific and formalized physics-informed data-driven techniques toward accelerating the generation of both forward and inverse scaling laws that can be transferred across material systems or manufacturing processes to understand the fundamental linkages between processing and the properties of interest in metal additive manufacturing (AM).
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY22%20Abstracts/DECP-28431_TechnicalAbstract_2022TechnicalAbstractDECP-28431.pdf
22
Texas A&M UniversityDistinguished Early Career ProgramDistinguished Early Career Program Awards$624,697
In this work, advanced sensor system prototypes will be developed for advanced reactors designs with online refueling and moving fuel capabilities, such as, pebble-bed-reactors (PBR) and molten-salt reactors (MSR) to fill current technological gaps. This system will allow burnup and special nuclear material (SNM) measurements of fuel during loading and unloading with high precision, thus, improving nuclear security, reactor safety, and operations. VR/AR education modules for engineering students will be developed and tested.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY22%20Abstracts/DECP-27573_TechnicalAbstract_2022TechnicalAbstractDECP-27573_edited.pdf
22
University of New MexicoDistinguished Early Career ProgramDistinguished Early Career Program Awards$625,000
The objective of this integrated research and educational program is to perform separate effects tests (SETs) and integral effects tests (IETs) using a versatile molten salt test facility to validate system codes in support of the deployment of molten salt reactor (MSR) and Fluoride salt-cooled, High-temperature Reactors (FHRs) technologies and the expanded use of nuclear energy worldwide, and to offer students from undergraduate to graduate, especially Native American, Hispanic and underrepresented minorities, various training and education opportunities of advanced reactors and hands-on molten salt experiments.
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*Actual project funding will be established during the award negotiation phase.​